After a stinker against Arizona, the Columbus Blue Jackets have bounced back with consecutive wins against Colorado and Dallas.
The Jackets scored a couple goals early and never looked back en route to a 4-2 win over a Stars team that entered the game with eight wins in 10 games.
1. Does Nick Foligno know he’s no longer playing for a contract? After a three assist performance against Dallas he’s now recorded points in five consecutive games and has eight points in that span. For my money he’s been the Blue Jackets MVP this season.
2. After a long stretch of inconsistent production Ryan Johansen has caught fire of late having recorded points in eight consecutive games. Columbus’ depth players haven’t given them much this season so they’re going to need Johansen to keep producing if they want to continue winning games.
3. Kevin Connauton isn’t logging a lot of minutes, but he sure is efficient. He’s been huge for Columbus of late having recorded eight points over his last eight games, including the eventual game-winning-goal last night against his former team.
4. The first 40 minutes were pretty even, but I really don’t like what I saw from the Jackets in the 3rd period. They sat back quite a bit and the Stars took it to them the entire period. If Sergei Bobrovsky wasn’t on his game they probably would have lost in regulation.
5. Even-strength scoring chances: 10 for Columbus, 20 for Dallas. That’s not a great recipe for success and will need to change going forward.
6. Another thing I didn’t like: Jeremy Morin playing 5:20, and seeing just one shift in the 3rd period. It’s easier to defend leads when you’re playing in the offensive zone, and Morin certainly could have helped them in that regard. All he’s done since coming over from Chicago is drive possession and create scoring chances, so I’d like to see him getting at least 12-13 minutes every night. He’s earned them.
7. It was not a banner night for Jack Johnson and David Savard. They were two of Columbus’ three worst possession players, and the two were on for just five scoring chances for and 11 against. Obviously they were squaring off against pretty good players, but you need more from your top guys.
8. James Wisniewski with another good night at the office. He came out just under even in possession, scored and had five shots on goal in the process. Bless him and his white tape/white stick combo.
9. Don’t look now but the Blue Jackets are just six points behind Toronto for the final wild card spot, and they have two games in hand. After the start Columbus had and all the injuries they’ve faced it’s remarkable they’re still in the race.
10. Speaking of which, Columbus’ next game is against the Maple Leafs. That’s a big, big game. Recent posts Wins keep coming for Jackets + scoring chance numbers On Nick Foligno’s six-year extension Jeremy Morin leads the way in December possession Hotstove: Best fit for Antoine Vermette? Hotstove: Best fit for Jaromir Jagr?